Tuesday, March 20, 2001 | By: Drotuno

Angel's Embrace Chapter 2

The week leveled out into something somewhat normal. As normal as four vampires attending Dartmouth could really be.
All of us were in most classes together, except when Edward was in his music theory classes or Economics and Alice took off to the theatre for costume design. Jasper and I tried to accommodate each other with our class choices. He didn't really need my shield, but I protected him anyway.
"Hmm," Alice smiled, sitting next to me in the cafeteria. "Early start to the weekend," she said wistfully. I looked up from my homework with a raised eyebrow.
"Sunny day tomorrow, then?" I asked, frowning at my European History homework. I would have been done already, but Edward was too much to resist when he wanted my attention.
"Yes," she giggled. I snorted, shaking my head. "Do you think we can get the boys to hit the city?" She asked, her eyebrows rising up and down. She looked like a tiny version of Groucho Marx.
"You're the psychic," I laughed. "Need a rock and roll fix, do you?"
"Rock and roll…country…" she sighed. "Hell, it's been so long…I'll even take one of Edward's boring piano jazz bars."
"They aren't boring…they're sweet," I huffed, pouting slightly. "And besides…Carlisle said we had to keep it to a minimum."
"Minimum," she frowned, "not never."
"Ok, ok," I smiled. I couldn't say that I didn't disagree with her. "Well, what do you suggest. Every time we," I pointed between us, "mention it, we get shot down." And for a moment I wondered if it was because Alice and I had no shame in asking just about weekly.
"Rose!" Alice beamed, pulling out her cell phone and texting at top speed. I shook my head. Alice was right. Using Rose to get to Emmett was the only way to get to Jasper and Edward on this particular subject.
I went back to my history homework. I was finishing it up when I heard a teasing, velvet voice in my ear. "Tsk, tsk," Edward whispered. "Someone didn't finish their homework."
"It wasn't for lack of trying," I laughed, closing my book. "But that someone was unfairly distracted last night." I smirked, looking over at him. He was causing quite the disturbance in the cafeteria, but neither one of us paid it any attention. I couldn't blame them. He was wearing khaki pants and a navy blue v-neck sweater with a white t-shirt under it.
"A fine distraction it was, too," he crooned, kissing me softly behind my ear. I giggled, leaning into him as he nuzzled my neck with a chuckle. My husband was unapologetic for any distractions he caused, no matter the consequences.
"Eddie," Jasper called, looking at his phone. "Emmett wants to hit a club tonight. What do you think?"
Alice and I made our faces unreadable and I slid my shield carefully over her. She smirked, looking over her own history homework.
"It's been a while, sure," Edward nodded, resting his chin on my shoulder. Somehow I knew he was all too aware that Alice and I started the whole thing. "Rock or country?"
"Rock," Alice and I blurted out, wincing at the fact that we couldn't help it. They both chuckled at us.
A few years ago, we could barely get Jasper to play the guitar. Edward had returned back into my life playing one and Jasper couldn't stop himself from joining his brother. I had even bought Edward an electric guitar. The two of them would sit and play for hours together, Edward alternating between piano and guitar. Alice and I couldn't get enough of it.
The problem became Emmett. He didn't play an instrument, but he had a fantastic voice. He was able to mimic just about anyone. He loved his rock music, especially the eighties, but he became jealous, feeling left out.
Emmett stopped hanging out with his brothers when they played. He would tune cars, go hunting, or play video games. Rose and I tried to help him by doing these things with him, but he didn't want pity. The solution was so simple.
There wasn't a beat Emmett couldn't pound out on his Jeep steering wheel. Alice looked over at us on the way home from school one day with a raised eyebrow and we all smiled. We took off, shopping and bringing Emmett home a present. Alice, Rose and I dropped a large box in front of him and left him to rummage through it. Inside was an instructional DVD on how to learn drums, two sets of drumsticks, and a practice drum pad. It was never mentioned again.
It didn't take long, weeks maybe, before he showed up at the house with a full set of Pearl drums in metallic, lime green. After several busted drum heads, a few more "how to" videos, and unlimited patience from his brothers, Emmett became quite proficient and was so happy it could barely be contained.
It was Emmett that got Jasper and Edward to play at the first club. They played country clubs for Jasper and Emmett loved retro rock. Edward went along for the fun of it and for me. At first. However, they were just as hooked as we were.
"Rock it is," Jasper snorted and Edward nodded. "Tonight in Boston."
We made our way to European History, sitting in our usual seats at the back table. We took out our homework and sent it to the front, Alice whispering in my ear what we should wear. She really wanted the rock look this time.
"Ok, ladies and gentleman," Professor Graham snapped, bringing everyone's attention to the front. "Last time you were here, we were talking about France…"
I settled in to take notes, but as soon as Paris was mentioned, I was lost to memories.
Edward had always made a huge deal out of our anniversary. For our first, he took me to Chicago, showing me were he was from, the hospital that Carlisle had been working when he found Edward dying of Spanish Influenza, and the house he grew up in.
It was our second anniversary my thoughts drifted off to. Edward wanted to show me Europe. England and Ireland were beautiful, the weather misty, and we were able to stay out during the daytime. But I had loved Paris.
I couldn't say whether it was seeing the city, the people, the flawless French that rolled off of Edward's tongue or the fact that he kept speaking it the whole time we were there just to see my reaction to it.
"Heights, Edward," I groaned, clinging to his shirt as we climbed to the top of the Eiffel Tower.
"Love, I won't let you fall," he chuckled, guiding me with his arm wrapped firmly around my waist. "Besides, if you fell…nothing would happen except the concrete would shatter," he laughed.
"Not funny," I growled.
"You have to see the view…please?" He begged. As always, his face was my undoing. He could have been leading me to the fiery pits of hell and "please" would have made me go on through.
Edward was right, the view was spectacular, like nothing I had ever seen. It was a late summer night, a warm breeze blowing my hair back as I looked out over the lights of Paris. I'm pretty sure I said, "Wow." But my voice was stuck in my throat.
He wrapped his arms around me from behind, his voice pure silk in my ear. "I told you, love," he smiled against my shoulder. I looked back to him and his eyes were only on me. It was one of the many moments that he would rather watch my reaction to something than actually take in the sight himself.
As Edward pulled me to different spots on the observation deck, I noticed that we were slowly becoming the last ones left. He pointed out different landmarks, his accent pronouncing each place perfectly. At one point, I had to stop myself from turning in his arms and launching myself at him. He knew all about my dilemma by the time "Saint-Germain-des-Pres" came out of his mouth smoothly.
"Hmm," he mused, tracing his nose up my neck. "Interesting reaction, love," he smiled against my neck when I nodded incoherently. "How about this…" he whispered, gliding his hands flat over my stomach and pulling me flush to him. I moaned at the feel of him. He began singing a song in French ever so softly into my hair and I whimpered.
I turned in his arms, attacking his mouth with mine. He groaned, pushing me into the rail. Edward's hands roamed my body, causing me to just pull him in closer. One hand slipped under my shirt, cupping my breast while the other was gathering my long skirt.
"Edward, here?" I breathed, wrapping my leg around his hip. I might have been questioning him, but I couldn't stop myself from trying to get closer. I slid my hand into his hair as his mouth opened, his tongue dragging up my neck.
"Your scent, baby," he growled, grinding into me and hitting me just where I wanted him to. "It's driving me mad, love…we're alone up here…please…" My head hit his shoulder and nodded. With the quickest moves I had ever seen him use, he ripped my underwear from me and dropped his pants.
He picked me up, leaning me into a post and entering me with force. "Jesus," I growled, gripping his strong shoulders. I lightly bit into his neck to stop from crying out when he pushed into me again.
"Fuck, baby…so wet," he moaned. His breath caught has I shifted my hips and met his rhythm. "You have no idea how I've wanted to take you here…everywhere…I want to fuck you all over the world…"
My eyes rolled when those words landed in my ear. I pulled my head from his shoulder, capturing his mouth with mine. His tongue caressed mine, making me pull his hair just a little harder. One hand held me firmly while his other slipped to where we were connected. I single brush against my sensitive bundle of nerves and I cried out into his mouth.
"Bella," Edward whispered desperately, "You're killing me, love."
"Sorry," I frowned, realizing I had completely zoned out in class. It didn't happen often, but when it did, it was so embarrassing.
Jasper slid a note down to me.
And how was your trip to Lustyville?
I flipped him off much to his and Edward's amusement, causing them to laugh silently. Alice had more sympathy.
Paris? She wrote on the back of Jasper's paper.
I sighed and nodded. She smiled in understanding. Jasper had taken her to Las Vegas again last year, so when she and I were waiting for a class to start, we caught the tail end of a conversation between some students about the strip and she was lost for the rest of the class.
She had seen most decisions we made and tried to stay out of our business, but even the Eiffel Tower moment had shocked her. She couldn't help but ask me about it when we came home. Sometimes Happy Edward still took them all by surprise. I just prayed that Alice didn't see Dirty Edward. That was all mine.
Emmett was practically bouncing by the time we got home. "I found a new club," he gushed, holding up his laptop. "Retro rock…open mike…" He grinned, raising his eyebrows up and down. Alice and I snickered, leaving them to debate where we were going and joining Rose in her room.
"How was school, kids?" She teased, looking up from her magazine and smiling.
"Brutal," I huffed, flopping down in the chair across from hers. Alice's nose wrinkled and she nodded in agreement as she sat on the bed.
"What are we doing before we go out tonight?" Rose asked, looking between us. "Which is brilliant, by the way…it's been too damn long…"
"It has," I agreed, "but I need to talk to Carlisle before we do anything." They both nodded in understanding. I had been talking to Carlisle for years. Thanks to him, I was able to get over Edward's decision to leave me and Jake's abusive treatment.
Carlisle liked to chat a few times a month to make sure I was still doing ok. I'm sure he will forever worry, considering I was "the baby" of the family. He was worried about my change. Since Edward had to change me after the accident with Victoria, Carlisle had been a huge help with learning everything over again, from simply walking to testing every aspect of my shield.
"He's home…go to it…and we can maybe play pool before we have to get ready," Rose smirked.
"Sure," I sighed, getting up and heading back downstairs. The boys were still debating over the computer at the dining room table. As I walked by, Edward's hands shot out, pulling me onto his lap. I laughed, struggling against him.
"Where are you running off to, love?" He asked, chuckling.
"Carlisle," I breathed, looking into his butterscotch eyes.
"Oh yeah," Emmett said, looking up from the computer. "Sorry Bells…I forgot to tell you…he said to send you to him when you got home. Hurry and we can play pool before we go out tonight."
"That's what Rose said," I narrowed my eyes at him. "What are you up to?"
"Nothing!" He laughed.
"Whatever," I smirked. I turned back to Edward, kissing his forehead. "I'll be right back."
"Ok, love," he smiled, letting me stand up.
"Hurry, Bells," Jasper snorted. "Eddie's riddled with curiosity…has been since history class."
Edward growled and I laughed. Oh, Eiffel Tower, baby, I thought to him. Edward's growl stopped abruptly and his head snapped around to me, a smirk firmly planted on his face. His eyes darkened slightly. And Jasper shouldn't tease you. I raised my eyebrow and shot my shield out, knocking Jasper back in his chair. I held him, teetering him dangerously on two legs.
"Say you're sorry," I growled, rocking the chair slightly.
"Ok, ok," Jasper laughed. "Sorry…" I started to let him back up. "Sorry you can't keep your dirty thoughts under control…"
With a sigh, I pushed hard and he fell to the floor with a crash. Emmett guffawed, shaking his head. "Better you than me, bro," he smiled.
Edward chuckled, pulling me in for a quick kiss. "Thanks," he said against my lips. "Love you, my sweet girl."
"Of course you love her," Jasper snickered, "she's more protective than Rose." He righted his chair and sat back down with a huff.
I rolled my eyes to Edward and he winked. "As she should be," he laughed. "Go, love, hurry back."
"'Kay," I smiled, walking out onto the deck, around the pool, and into Carlisle and Esme's house.
"Bella!" Esme beamed, rushing over to hug me. "He's in his office…"
"Hey, Bells," Carlisle smiled, looking up from the biggest, oldest book I had ever seen.
"Can you not get that in paperback?" I teased, sitting down in the chair across from him.
"I wish, but it's the last of its kind," he chuckled. "It's Demitri's accounts of his time in Volterra."
"Oh, that's cool," I nodded. "What's the topic today?" I asked, smiling. "I have nothing."
Carlisle smiled, knowing that we tried to keep these chats focused only on whatever issue I was having at the time. "I have a few things…what do you hear from Jake?"
"Um, he send a few emails before Edward and I went away to Isle Esme for our anniversary."
"Nothing since?"
"No," I shook my head. "But that's not unusual…with the pack, Anna, plus the kids…he stays pretty busy. I try not to call him…just in case he's overheard."
"Smart," Carlisle mumbled, frowning. "What's the longest time period you've gone without hearing from him?"
"Probably three months…if there's nothing in my email by Monday, I'll send him a quick note."
"Will you let me know?"
"Sure…is there something wrong?" I asked, biting my lip.
"I don't think so, but ever since Demitri's visit, I've been trying to figure out how Aro would try to approach us. I think he would start in Denali and come South through Forks." He paused for a moment, sighing. "If they run into the pack, it could get ugly."
"But you don't want me to stop Jake, do you?"
"I'm conflicted…Jake and the pack can handle themselves…I worry who the Volturi would run into…they still hunt humans. And then there's the part of me that only wants to protect my family…" He shook his head. "No matter the means necessary."
"I get that."
"I know you do…there's not relationships like our family in Italy, Bella. I wonder what they will think if they tried to come between us," he mused, his brow wrinkling.
"Shouldn't this be an Edward and Jasper conversation?" I asked, wondering why he was bringing this whole thing up to me.
"Eventually, it will be a whole family conversation," he sighed. "Edward used to want to protect you, but we can't afford that…you and Alice are our strongest defense. However, your relationship with the pack is helpful…she can't see them…"
"Right, ok…that makes sense," I nodded. "Yeah, it bothers her that she can't see Charlie for me…he lives on the reservation now…"
"Yes, she's complained more than once," he chuckled. "But she's watching for a decision from Aro. You will be here if something slips through…which reminds me…the second thing I want to discuss with you…I want to start larger and harder practices with you."
"Fine," I chuckled, "but if Emmett throws trees and boulders, he's in for it."
"I'll warn him," Carlisle laughed.
"What else?"
"Tonight…I believe you guys are going out?" He asked, smiling.
"Yes," I laughed, unable to stop myself.
"I know you all love it…though I don't see it…"
"Carlisle…" Esme warned from the door. "I have explained…"
"Yeah, I know," he chuckled. "Rock stars…bad boys…I know."
I snorted, looking over at Esme. She rolled her eyes at him in a very Alice type way. "He doesn't get it," she whispered.
"Anyway," he sighed, smirking. "Be careful…shield Jasper just in case…try not to let the boys get into trouble…" By trouble, he meant becoming overly jealous and protective when we were approached by other men.
"Ok," I nodded.
"Will you be out all night?" Carlisle asked, but he was looking over at Edward in the doorway.
"We'll be home by dawn," Edward smiled. "Love, Emmett wants a couples pool tournament before we go."
"Why?" I laughed. "He hates it when you and I are partners."
"I know," Edward chuckled. "He keeps singing a Shakira song in his head…well, not so much as singing as playing the music video…" He grimaced, his nose wrinkling adorably. "I have no idea what he's up to."
"He's a pig," I grimaced. "Anything else?" I asked, turning back to Carlisle.
"No, have fun. And tell them…they can hear it from you."
Edward's brow wrinkled as he listened to Carlisle's thoughts. "Come on, I'll tell you all about it as we school them in pool, baby," I laughed, tugging him out the door by his hand. We walked across the deck, opening the back door and stepping into the game room. Our siblings were already there. "What's the terms, Emmett?" I asked, folding my arms across my chest.
Emmett smiled, causing Edward to chuckle when his thoughts were finally revealed. "Winner chooses the play list tonight."
"Fine, Em," Edward smiled, shaking his head.
"That's it?" I laughed and Emmett nodded. "Fine."
"Harder practices, Bells?" Alice asked, frowning and pulling her cue from the wall.
"Yeah, that's what Carlisle said," I sighed. "Who's up first?"
"Rosie and I against Jazz and Ali…you and Eddie play the winner since you cheat," Emmett smirked.
"Ok, Pot…Kettle…" I rolled my eyes.
"We don't cheat, Em…we're just that good," Edward laughed.
"Whatever…just play the winner," Emmett snorted.
"Spill it, Bells," Jasper frowned. "Why are you practicing again?"
As they played, Edward pulled me onto his lap in a chair to the side and I told them everything that Carlisle and I discussed. Jasper agreed with his theory that the Volturi would start in Denali and work south.
"Yeah, but wouldn't Aro have seen us here?" Emmett asked, lining up a shot and sinking a solid. "He reads every thought, right?"
"Not necessarily," Edward answered coolly. "Aro can read every thought, but only what he looks for…like rifling through a filing cabinet. They've been around so long that time is different for them…in his mind, we weren't in Forks that long. He may not have thought to check for that." I watched worry flicker over his perfect features and I turned his wedding band slowly.
Emmett cursed loudly, scratching the cue ball. Rose slapped the back of his head. Alice clapped, setting herself up a sweet, easy shot.
Hmm, I thought to Edward, smiling. What do you want to play tonight, baby? Edward chuckled, shrugging. Retro rock, right? I asked him and he smirked and nodded. Ok, I can work with that…do you trust me?
"With my life, love," he whispered in my ear. Immediately, Edward and I lost ourselves in our own personal bubble. No words were spoken, just soft touches and nuzzles.
"Bells," Jasper called, breaking us out of our comforting moment. "What are you going to do about Jake?"
"Um, I was going to email him Monday…should I do it sooner?" I asked, watching Rose sink two more balls. So far, the match was even.
"Maybe," Edward sighed, "he might need to put the pack on alert."
"Ok, tomorrow then," I nodded, turning to the sound of Alice growling and Emmett calling the eight ball. I smiled, looking at Edward. "Ready?"
"Definitely," he chuckled, standing up with me still in his arms. He set me on my feet, kissing my neck sweetly. "You break, beautiful."
Emmett really did think Edward and I cheated. Technically, he was wrong, but with my skill and Edward's ability to read everyone's moves, we learned to communicate every shot very well. Only once did we actually cheat. I had used my shield to push a ball into the pocket. Emmett had been teasing us relentlessly about the breaking of our second bed frame. The bet was for him to shut up about it. He did.
I broke, sinking two solids. My next shot went in, while the fourth shot missed, leaving Rose with a tricky shot. She'll scratch, I thought to Edward.
He nodded imperceptibly, smiling when Rose cursed under her breath. He pulled the ball out of the pocket and lined up a simple shot, taking out two balls with one shot. Edward took great shots, leaving two balls left on the table.
Emmett had an amazing run of luck, taking out six balls, but he missed his last shot. He left me with a terrible angle.
I looked to Edward and he tucked my hair behind my ear, saying, "Try the angle, love." What he meant was miss, but leave the cue ball in a terrible position.
I missed, leaving Rose wedged against the bumper and the eight ball. "Damn, Bells," she whined. "I like it better when we're on the same side."
"Sorry, Rose…blame Emmett," I laughed. I've tried teaching her to hop the ball…it won't happen. Edward chuckled, kissing my head.
She did try to hop it only to leave Edward with an easy shot. He took out the last ball and then lined up for the eight ball. "Eight ball, corner pocket," he smirked, winking at me.
"You have to cheat," Emmett frowned.
"They didn't cheat, Em," Alice rolled her eyes.
I hung my cue, taking Edward's and hanging his too. "You'll have your playlist by the time we're in the car," I laughed, heading towards the stairs.
"Try not to break any tiles," Emmett teased when Edward started to follow me.
"Watch it, Emmett….or it's a Billy Joel-Elton John night," I growled. Edward laughed and Emmett scowled.
"She will too," Jasper laughed.
We made our way upstairs, Edward closing the door behind us. "Are you ok with what Carlisle talked to you about?" He asked, sitting down on the edge of the chaise in the corner.
I shrugged, walking over to stand in front of him. "It doesn't matter if I'm ok with it, Edward," I cupped his face. "It's what we have to do…You told me once that protection of the family comes first…"
"Yes, love, but…"
"There's not really a but…" I smiled, brushing his hair from his forehead. "It's what needs to be done. I will shield us all if I have to. It's not that big of strain on me anymore."
Edward nodded, remembering the first year after my change. My shield would drain me completely after only a week of protecting Jasper at school. Carlisle told me to make sure I fed and I did, building up my "muscle" as he called it once.
He pulled me onto his lap so that I was straddling his legs. "How strange is it we are still depending on Jacob?" He asked, smirking.
I laughed softly. "I suppose it is…but we have to rely on each other to keep everything a secret, don't we? I mean…and it's not a bad thing to have someone watching our backs clear on the other side of the country…We can't have Kate get hurt."
"I noticed you didn't say Tanya," he chuckled. I just glared at him, my arms folding across my chest. He cupped my face, kissing me quickly. "I know what you're saying, love. I just worry…I'll lose my mind if they try and take you from me."
"Me too, baby," I frowned, pulling myself closer to him. He helped me by wrapping my legs around his waist. I twirled his hair at his neck through my fingers. I leaned in, brushing my lips against his. There was no chaste with us anymore. Not when we were alone like we were. "I know we should get ready, but…" I whispered against his lips.
He smiled, his hands flattening on my back and his eyes turning jet black. "Ready for what?" He chuckled, his breath catching when I rolled my hips against him. "Oh, Bella," he breathed, "how quiet can we be?" He asked, burying his face in my neck and kissing up the side of my neck.
I hated the unending teasing Edward took from his bothers, although we teased right back. No one was really safe from listening ears in a house full of vampires. I hated even more that there was a possibility that they could hear the things Edward said to me. In the house, we tried to be quiet. In the house, the dirty talk came from me. With a smile against his cheek, I thought, We're never quiet enough when you fuck me, Edward. It's impossible not to want to scream… I licked the shell of his ear, feeling the rumble of his growl in my chest. With another roll of my hips, my own breath caught at the feel of his arousal tight against me. So hard, baby… I smiled against his neck. Is that all for me?
"Always," he growled and I found myself pinned under him on the chaise. "Show me…show me what you want, love…" he whispered in my ear, grinding into me.
With a smirk, I showed him ripping clothes from us and Edward burying himself in me. Hard. He did exactly what I showed him, capturing my mouth to keep me from crying out. Keep me quiet, baby…you feel too good. I wrapped my legs around his hips, meeting him thrust for thrust. I scratched down his back, gripping his ass and I heard a sound escape him.
Edward broke from my mouth, cupping one of my breasts. With just a flick of his tongue, my nipple was a hard pebble. More… I begged and his mouth sucked it in. My head flew back, my back arched up. When his teeth bit down, I shook, trying to keep my sounds in. He saw it all in my mind and I felt him smile against my skin, switching over to the other breast.
God, Edward…please…I need to come…harder… Capturing my mouth once again, he hit me in the sweetest spot. I whimpered against his lips. He twitched inside me, growing a little larger. Knowing I was close, I thought, I love your cock inside me, baby…my pussy wrapped around you…
He growled low, hitting me deeper, and I fell over the edge. He kissed me hard, trying to keep my sounds down to a minimum. My whole body vibrated, clenching around him and pulling him in. Edward in orgasm was a sight to behold. Every muscle flexed, a slight gaping smile came across is face, and his breath caught all at the same time.
Yeah, they so heard that… I thought as Edward's head hit my shoulder. He laughed silently against my neck, kissing my collarbone sweetly.
Down the stairs I heard Alice growl, "Jasper Whitlock, if you say one word to them…we'll be in a piano bar before you can say shit…she's already made the decision…"
Edward laughed, pulling back to look at me. I bit my lip, giggling. Thank God for Alice… I shook my head.
"No kidding," Edward snorted, letting me get up.
Edward was dressed and ready before me, heading downstairs to load up Emmett's drums and the now multiple collection of guitars that he and Jasper had attained. There was also an electric keyboard, though Edward rarely liked to use it. Most of the places we went had a piano in house.
Alice barged in my room as I was just pulling on my jacket. "Nice," she beamed. "I'm so proud…" She wiped a fake tear away and ducked when I playfully swiped at her.
"Yeah, yeah," I rolled my eyes. "Just don't plan another wedding for a while…black jeans and leather jackets I can do." She giggled and nodded.
She was too cute in a short denim skirt and knee high black boots, her top a cute black button down. Rose walked in, putting us both to shame. She was wearing a form fitting red dress, looking like she just stepped off the MTV lot.
We walked down the stairs, the boys coming to a complete halt thanks to Emmett. He dropped a cymbal and we all winced at the crash. "Aw, hell, Rosie…" He groaned. "You couldn't wear something that wouldn't get me in a fight?"
"You can't fight," I laughed, "Carlisle said so…in fact, it's part of the rules for this evening. No fighting, I have to shield Jasper…be home by dawn…yada, yada, yada…"
"Carlisle gave us rules?" Jasper snorted and I nodded.
He opened his mouth to say something else and Alice stopped him. "Jasper, I am really not kidding when I say shut up!" His head spun around to her, his mouth in a smirk. "If you want to hear the piano man all night…then say it…go ahead." Edward cracked up, shaking his head.
"Bella, love," he snorted. "Give them a playlist so they can stop panicking."
"I can," I smiled. "Jasper, did you have something you wanted to say?"
"Nope, just that I love my little sister…" Jasper reached out for me, but I ducked his grasp and laughed.
"You're sure?" I asked, turning to Emmett and raising my eyebrow. He shook his head no emphatically.
"Hmm," I mused, looking at my brothers and husband. "Well, first…how many songs?"
"Um," Emmett started. "They said Thursdays are pretty cool…we could do up to four."
"Four," I bit my lip trying not to laugh. Everyone but Edward looked so nervous. "How's this…a little Guns and Roses," I smiled, tapping Emmett on the chest. "Maybe some Lynard Skynard," I smirked as Jasper beamed. "And, baby, you can surprise me…I don't care." Edward picked great songs and most of them were for me.
"Not one request, love?" He asked, his head tilting. He walked over to me, setting down the guitar case and wrapping his arms around my waist. He knew there were a few I liked more than others.
"Ooh, I do like that Cheap Trick song…" I laughed, thinking the chorus alone may drive women to the brink of insanity tonight. "I'll leave the last one for you, ok?"
"Fine, love," he smiled, squeezing my waist and kissing the tip of my nose.
The drive from New Hampshire to Boston was just about the same distance as Seattle was from Forks. We took two cars, Emmett's drums loaded up in my SUV and the guitars in Emmett's Jeep. Alice and Jasper rode with us.
The boys let us out at the front doors, pulling around to the back to unload their things. We usually didn't see them until the end of the night. We walked in and I was surprised to see that for a Thursday night the place was pretty busy. We were greeted by a large, beefy man. His name tag said Butch. I smiled, thinking he was appropriately named and that his mother hated him. "Ladies," he smiled and he reminded me of Emmett. His smile was the difference. He went from menacing to sweet in the blink of an eye. "Welcome to Solstice."
"Thanks, Butch," I smiled.
"Sure thing…now, there's two bands playing tonight…have fun and let me know if anyone gives you ladies any trouble."
"We will, Butch," Alice smiled, patting his giant arm.
We picked a table close to the stage, buying drinks that would sit there the rest of the night. We were on the end and to our right was another group of women. They looked to be in their early twenties, pretty. "You're going to enjoy this, aren't you?" I asked Rose, looking over at her.
"Hell yeah," she smiled, eying the three women.
"Like you won't," Alice snorted. "I know why you chose the songs you did…I'm not stupid, Bells," she laughed. I laughed with her. I had picked the three songs for a reason. Edward had lead guitar in all of them. I smiled, biting my bottom lip.
"Sue me…when you win the next time…you can pick!"
The first band wasn't bad. The lead singer was a girl and she had an awesome voice, raspy and cutting. We liked them, but it had been months since we had seen our boys play in public - something I could kiss Emmett for suggesting the first time - and we were ready for them.
Once they were introduced, our eyes barely left the stage. The haunting few notes of "Welcome to the Jungle" wafted out as the curtain was raised. I had to bite back a groan, seeing Edward in his dark jeans, gray t-shirt and an unbuttoned darker gray shirt. The guitar that I had bought him continued to be the one he used the most no matter how many he and Jasper picked up.
Emmett's voiced boomed, sounding just like Axel Rose. How he could sing and pound out the perfect rhythm was beyond me. Jasper laughed, playing the bass and standing next to Edward.
My eyes slid to behind them and I saw the piano had been moved on stage. I sighed, wondering what Edward had decided to play as the fourth song.
The next song made me smile. I loved Jasper's voice. "Simple Man" was a good song for him. He picked up the acoustic guitar that he had finally bought for himself and he and Edward sat down on two stools behind the mikes. I liked the message in this song. The lyrics meant a lot to me.
Mama told me when I was young Come sit beside me, my only son And listen closely to what I say. And if you do this It will help you some sunny day.
Edward's guitar was deep and gritty. His eyes closed, his fingers erotically stroking the strings.
Take your time... Don't live too fast, Troubles will come and they will pass. Go find a woman and you'll find love, And don't forget son, There is someone up above.
Emmett pounded the cymbals with a huge smile on his face, watching his brothers for any change in the rhythm.
And be a simple kind of man. Be something you love and understand. Be a simple kind of man. Won't you do this for me son, If you can?
Edward stood for his guitar solo, walking close to the edge of the stage, his eyes closed and his fingers flying over the strings. I smiled when Alice shoved me with a giggle. He was beautiful and I wouldn't apologize for thinking so.
By now, the girls beside us were staring at them with gaping mouths. Just wait, I thought to myself with a smile. Edward hasn't sung yet.
When the song finished, Edward looked at me with a wink and smirk. I laughed, shaking my head. He took the guitar off his shoulder, setting it on the stand. He walked around to the piano and lifted the lid. I tilted my head, trying to figure out what song he would do next.
"Oh God, Bells," Alice gasped. "This is for you and me." My brow furrowed, but I looked back at the stage.
Jasper had pulled a stool and a mike over by the piano, setting his guitar on his lap. Edward adjusted his mike and began to play. Emmett kept a soft beat, nodding with him.
I can't light no more of your darknessAll my pictures seem to fade to black and whiteI'm growing tired and time stands still before meFrozen here on the ladder of my lifeToo late to save myself from fallingI took a chance and changed your way of lifeBut you misread my meaning when I met youClosed the door and left me blinded by the lightDon't let the sun go down on meAlthough I search myself, it's always someone else I seeI'd just allow a fragment of your life to wander freeBut losing everything is like the sun going down on me
Edward's playing and voice were so full of emotion that I could hardly breathe. Jasper smiled, joining him in harmony for the rest of the song.
I can't find, oh the right romantic lineBut see me once and see the way I feelDon't discard me just because you think I mean you harmBut these cuts I have they need love to help them heal
I turned to look at Alice, who had laid her head on my shoulder when the song was over. "Crazy romantics," Rose laughed, winking at the two of us. "You two will eventually stop breathing one day."
I giggled, "You're probably right."
"Everybody on their feet!" Emmett boomed, standing behind his drum set, tapping his sticks together. His beat had everyone clapping their hands. I had to laugh at him. He was never shy. Ever.
Edward slung his guitar back over his shoulder, starting the song I was sure was going to drive the girls beside us crazy.
I want you to want me
I need you to need me
I'd love you to love me
I'm beggin' you to beg me
I want you to want me
I need you to need me
I'd love you to love me
I'm beggin' you to beg me
I'll shine up the old brown shoes, put on a brand new shirt…
I had to laugh. Jasper walked up to Edward, tugging on the collar of his shirt with a smile on his face as Edward sang, trying not to laugh. I even heard Emmett's voice break with a chuckle as he sang back up. They were too cute when they were silly.
I looked over at the girls next to us, elbowing Alice. "They'll rush the stage, watch…"
Rose cracked up as one girl bolted from her seat and tried to touch Edward and Jasper's legs. I laughed as they both took a step back, Edward looking up at me shaking his head and smiling. He knew it was the reason I liked the song. He never believed me when I told him he had groupies a few years ago. It made me laugh to prove him wrong.
Our guys were a big hit with the club, besides us and the girls at the next table. I could hear conversations break out about the boys' talent. I couldn't be prouder of them if I tried. We waited a few moments, knowing they would join us as soon as they got the cars loaded back up.
When they appeared through the side door, the club broke into applause again, the girls next to us the loudest. Emmett's giant arms shot in the air, thanking them, drumsticks still in his hand. Jasper rolled his eyes at his brother, but patted him on his back. They walked passed the girls reaching out for them, Edward reaching me first. "Did you get your fix, love?" He asked, wrapping his arms around me with a chuckle. The girls behind him frowned at us, their hands on their hips.
I giggled, hearing Jasper ask Alice something similar. "I supposed it will have to do for now," I sighed dramatically. "But really…it's never enough, Edward." He laughed and kissed my lips quickly, leading me out into the night.


Dana Peckham said...

Well, I for one love anything you write. I have read all of your stories, and would NEVER tell you to change a thing. Just wondering if Mister Rondell Garcia is going to pick apart EVERY plot line? 13 year old boys are very insecure in their Man/boy hoods!?! He has 3 more stories to read to get to end of of the amazing arc you created (and just finished (?) earlier this year? Dtruno, stick with the faithful/constructive reviews of your true fans (minions).

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